Both health coaches and nutritionists use action plans and motivations to achieve results, Pilin says, but they differ in their education and overall approach. “For starters, a nutritionist is someone who typically has studied nutrition through a four-year degree program and offers advice specifically around nutrition,” she explains. “On the other hand, a certified health coach is more holistic and offers a much wider range of support.”
If a client is looking to lose weight to reduce their risk of metabolic and cardiovascular diseases, a nutritionist would provide a meal plan based on calories and micronutrients. A health coach, Pilin says, would look beyond the plate.
Though food does play a role, health coaches also consider lifestyle factors, such as movement and stress management. Ultimately, they help clients make small, sustainable shifts in their daily routines that both achieve the desired result and help them feel their best, Pilin says.